It appears that virtual reality and 4K support will not be arriving any time soon to the Nintendo Switch, according to a Nintendo executive.
The Nintendo Switch's rivals are developing these technologies, with the PlayStation VR, PlayStation 4 Pro, and the Xbox One X. However, after the dominating success of the hybrid console since its March 2017 launch, does it really need these features?
Nintendo Exec Reiterates Lack Of Interest In VR And 4K
In an interview with French publication Les Numeriques, Nintendo France General Manager Philippe Lavoué reiterated the company's disinterest in pursuing virtual reality and 4K support.
In the translation by Nintendo Life, Lavoué expresses doubt that virtual reality headsets will appeal to the mainstream audience. High-end VR experiences require expensive equipment, and while work has started to improve the performance of cheaper set-ups, the technology is far from becoming something that casual gamers will purchase.
Meanwhile, for 4K support, the Nintendo executive questions the usefulness of investing in the development of technology that has not yet been adopted by most consumers. Lavoué most likely refers to the fact that 4K TVs are still expensive, which is why most households have not yet bought the technology.
"If we do the exact same thing than everyone else, we're bound to die because we are smaller than them," Lavoué said, revealing Nintendo's mindset in differentiating the Nintendo Switch from the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One and showing that lessons were learned from the failed Nintendo Wii U.
Nintendo Switch VR Still A Possibility
Lavoué's statements show that Nintendo is still not interested in pursuing new technology such as virtual reality for the Nintendo Switch. However, this does not mean that Nintendo Switch VR is not a possibility.
Months before the Nintendo Switch was launched, Nintendo patents revealed that there were plans to create what appeared to be a virtual reality headset for the hybrid console. The patent showed a device that will have a slot for the Nintendo Switch to be inserted into, similar to how smartphones are used to power Samsung's Gear VR and Google's Daydream View headsets.
Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima later admitted that Nintendo Switch VR is a possibility as the hybrid console is powerful enough to handle the technology. Kimishima noted that Nintendo will first have to figure out the best way to translate virtual reality into a fun experience for its gamers.